Just two days before, the Toronto Argonauts and Hamilton Tiger-Cats square off in the East Final with a Grey Cup berth at stake. The CFL has sent home Argos starting QB McLeod Bethel-Thompson for what is being characterized as a violation of COVID protocols. McLeod Bethel Thompson attended last night’s Toronto Raptors game with his daughter Aziza.
TSN’s Dave Naylor first reported the developing story this morning.
The Argos are two days away from playing the East Final this Sunday at BMO Field in front of their biggest crowd of the season. Ironically, McLeod Bethel-Thompson was at the Raptors game to help promote the team. And help boost awareness for the CFL and the Argonauts. Facing the biggest game of the career, although details are still developing. It appears that Thompson will be out Sunday with Antonio Pipkin stepping in on short notice against Hamilton.
The Argos are outdoors practicing today at Downsview Park. In preparation for what could be a stormy day on Sunday with a mix of snow and rain in the early forecast. There’s no doubt that McLeod Bethel-Thompson’s potential exclusion from Sunday’s game puts a dark cloud over the entire CFL and could leave a black mark on the league moving forward.
It’s worth noting that earlier this season, due to MLSE’s strict COVID protocols and guidelines. Defensive Coordinator Glen Young and defensive backs coach Joshua Bell departed the Argos due to vaccination requirements.
This year, the Argos also had a game rescheduled due to a COVID outbreak on the Edmonton Elks. It’s difficult at this time to lay blame on the parties involved for what is a disastrous development for not only Double Blue but for the credibility of the entire CFL.
Early reports are that McLeod Bethel-Thompson attended the Raptors game at a request by his team. If that’s the case, then the player has no fault whatsoever, regardless of his vaccination status. But it will be Bethel-Thompson punished for doing what was best for the CFL and the Argos. And the long-term ramifications of Thompson’s exclusion in the East championship game will do even more damage to a beleaguered league like the CFL.
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